Students, faculty contribute to successful blood drive


Staff photo

Senior Clara Chase gives blood in the back gym at the Red Cross blood drive in October. St. Pius X collected 100 pints of blood, which will go on to save 300 lives.

Ellie Ballew, Staff Writer

Would you be willing to give a pint of your blood to save three lives? Dozens of students and faculty answered that question with a resounding “yes” on Wednesday, October 28 when they participated in the bi-annual Red Cross blood drive.

Surpassing the goal of 80 pints of blood, St. Pius X collected 100 pints which will go on to save 300 lives.

The school has participated in this event for several years, but modifications had to be made this year due to the pandemic. 

For example, faculty organizer Mrs. Katie Stilson said that she and fellow organizer Mrs. Mary Pat Martin “changed from scheduling in-person to scheduling online, so we made up a form to help screen people to make sure they were eligible so that the Red Cross wouldn’t turn them away.”

In preparing for the blood drive, the layout also had to be changed. 

“We always had a layout before the pandemic, but this year we had to make sure they were socially distanced and had to adjust a lot of things,” stated Mrs. Martin. 

Mrs. Martin added that they had to adjust “how the snacks were set up because the students could no longer sit around [a snack table]. They used to be able to write out their Works of Mercy while eating snacks, but now [the Red Cross] didn’t want them sitting around for very long, so they had to be social distancing while recovering.”

The American Red Cross relies heavily on the St. Pius community because the school has a long history of successful blood drives. The Red Cross also said that “this is by far the biggest education drive they have been able to run since COVID changed our world.”

A first-time blood donor, senior Grace Mount said that she’s “wanted to donate for a while but wasn’t able to last year” and she “expected it to hurt more than it did.”

Junior Baxter Peterson said he decided to give blood to “save lives.”

Junior Kate Fredrickson chose to participate in the blood drive because “my whole family gives blood” and believes that “it’s a good thing to do especially with going to a Catholic school” 

Mrs. Martin wanted to send a huge thank you to “all of our students, faculty, and parents for donating their time and blood. We could not do it without each and every one, even those who tried to donate [but were unable]. You are greatly appreciated! 

“I am always so touched by the motivation and determination of our donors willing to accept feeling uncomfortable and even sick at times in order to literally give of themselves to save the life of someone they will never meet. This is what I find so beautiful!” Mrs. Martin exclaimed.

She and Mrs. Stilson especially wanted to recognize the Home and School representatives Mrs. Wynne Callaway and Mrs. Monica Wright for all of their “blood, sweat, and tears” while coordinating volunteers and helping organize the event.

There will be another blood drive next semester for those who missed this opportunity or are excited to donate again.

If you are on the fence or are nervous about donating, Mrs. Stilson suggested, “Try to put yourself in the position of someone who needs blood and just is grateful that you’re on the other side of donating. There’s no substitute for blood, so every person who is donating is saving three lives.”

In the words of Mrs. Martin, St. Pius is “blessed to have a community that is so willing to show compassion for others.”